Article

Equality: Its Justification, Nature, and Domain

John E. Roemer

in The Oxford Handbook of Economic Inequality

Published in print February 2011 | ISBN: 9780199606061
Published online September 2012 | | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/oxfordhb/9780199606061.013.0002

Series: Oxford Handbooks in Economics

 Equality: Its Justification, Nature, and Domain

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During the last 40 years, political philosophers have made important advances in our understanding of why equality is valuable, and what kind of equality is important. This article summarizes the development of these ideas, in particular, the contributions of John Rawls, Amartya Sen, Ronald Dworkin, Robert Nozick, Richard Arneson, and G. A. Cohen. It shows how these ideas have filtered into economic thinking in the conceptualization of equality of opportunity. It concludes with a brief discussion of how these ideas might be extended to evaluate intergenerational and global distributions of income or welfare.

Keywords: political philosophers; John Rawls; Amartya Sen; Ronald Dworkin; Robert Nozick; Richard Arneson; Cohen; opportunity; income distribution; welfare distribution

Article.  7294 words. 

Subjects: Economics ; Labour and Demographic Economics ; Public Economics

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